The cat’s tongue is one of its most impressive tools. A cat’s tongue is covered in tiny spines called papillae, and a grooming session may last up to an hour at a time during which the average adult cat grooms itself. During that hour, the cat removes dirt, kills hair parasites such as fleas, and leaves their fur shiny and silky smooth. Cats spend anywhere from 30-50% of their day preening, which means…. They must like you!
6 Possible Reasons Why Does my cat lick my face
Although it may be impossible to give a definite reason why, researchers, veterinarians and cat behaviour experts have suggested several reasons why your cat licks you; let’s take a look…
1. To show affection
You like to lick your human behind the ear and notice that it makes them very happy. This type of licking is a social bonding behaviour between cats in general and humans since you’re not just grooming others but showing a type of affection for them.
Some people may even say it has underlying sexual connotations, but you could care less about that because all you know is that it’s fun and gets positive responses from your favourite people.
Adult cats continue to lick their owners to say they love them.
2. To “mark their territory.”
Although cats are known for many different behaviours related to how they mark their territory, often, it’s through scent-marking. If you’ve ever noticed your cat sniffing the air or a surface before pawing and rubbing against it, then they may be marking their scent using this behaviour.
This is an important way for cats to claim something as theirs – particularly if there are other animals (cats) around. If your cat is licking you, this means that they want to make sure that as you walk around outside with them, other cats will know you belong exclusively to them!
3. To groom at you
Even though your cat might not realize licking you doesn’t help you get clean, don’t be surprised if he occasionally licks you. . This behaviour is completely natural .
As we previously mentioned, mother cats groom their kittens to teach them how to do it themselves and show them affection and create a bond between them.
In fact, according to a certified feline behaviour and training consultant, Marci Koski – cats who live in groups often widely groom each other as a way of bonding.
Cats aren’t bothered by being ‘attacked’ by the fellow felines they trust. If your cat has latched onto you and is grooming you, then they might be cleaning you to mark you as part of their family!
4. To taste something interesting.
There are some reasons why your cat may be licking you, even if it sounds silly! It could be something simple- like they love the way you taste. You may have spilt a drink or came into contact with something that left a residue on your skin – and your cat likes the way it tastes.
If it’s warm, or you’ve been exercising, it could be that your sweat has left a salty residue, and that’s what your cat is trying to taste.It just so happens that our sweet kitty cats have very different taste buds than we humans.
However, in comparison to human tongues, their sense of taste is quite tame. This doesn’t mean they can’t tell the difference between one flavour and another—they don’t have the same kinds of flavours in their repertoire as us ravenous carnivores do.
5. To get your attention.
Another possible reason your cat licks you may be that they want to get your attention. That is because cats often communicate with humans by licking at our skin.
So it’s plausible that your kitty would lick you in hopes of trying to get what he wants: for you to acknowledge his presence and respond accordingly!
6. To cope with anxiety or stress.
Sometimes, your cat might lick you because they feel a bit anxious or stressed. Although excessive licking can sometimes indicate a medical problem, cats often use grooming to cope with anxiety and stress.
You might find your cat licking the area around their backside and tail a lot after moving to a new home.
This behaviour typically isn’t anything to worry about – unless your cat starts grooming themselves so much that their skin becomes raw or creates bald spots. In these instances, it’s best to talk to a veterinarian about what you can do for them.
How Do I Get My Cat to Stop Licking My Face?
Unless your cat is licking you and grooming excessively, licking isn’t anything to worry about – it’s a natural cat behaviour. However, with the rough makeup of their tongue, it can feel not very pleasant every time they do it because cats have very rough tongues!
But if you love both your cat and the feeling of their tongue on your skin, there are grooming speciality products that can help get rid of the grittiness from their tongue without forcing them to stop licking.
If your kitty cat begins to lick excessively, you might try distractions to get their attention diverted from licking onto playing with a toy or engaging in some cuddling.
You can also walk away from the cat or move away for an extended period of licking becomes excessive.
The best way to tell if your cat is sick is to pay attention to its behaviour. For example, sudden changes in the activity level in a normally active cat can suggest a health issue.
Other factors, such as decreased appetite and weight loss, can also be signs of illness. If there are any concerns with your pet’s health, you should always reach out to your veterinarian!